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Depression Research and Treatment
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 815456, 6 pages
Research Article

Symptom Profile and Severity in a Sample of Nigerians with Psychotic versus Nonpsychotic Major Depression

Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Yaba, 8 Harvey Road, PMB 2008, Lagos, Nigeria

Received 1 May 2013; Revised 17 July 2013; Accepted 22 July 2013

Academic Editor: Martin Alda

Copyright © 2013 Increase Ibukun Adeosun and Oyetayo Jeje. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The therapeutic strategies in managing patients with psychotic major depression (PMD) differ from those with non-psychotic major depression (NMD), because of differences in clinical profile and outcome. However, there is underrecognition of psychotic symptoms in depressed patients. Previous studies in Western population suggest that certain symptom patterns, apart from psychosis which may be concealed, can facilitate the discrimination of PMD from NMD. These studies may have limited applicability to sub-Saharan Africa due to cross-cultural differences in the phenomenology of depression. This study compared the rates and severity of depressive symptoms in outpatients with PMD ( ) and NMD ( ) using the Structured Clinical Interview for Depression (SCID) and Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D). Patients with PMD had statistically significantly higher rates of suicidal ideation, suicidal attempt, psychomotor agitation, insomnia, and reduced appetite. Patients with NMD were more likely to manifest psychomotor retardation and somatic symptoms. PMD was associated with greater symptom severity. On logistic regression analysis, suicidal ideation, psychomotor disturbances, insomnia, and somatic symptoms were predictive of diagnostic status. The presence of these symptoms clusters may increase the suspicion of occult psychosis in patients with depression, thereby informing appropriate intervention strategies.